A friend of mine asked me to look into this, as he is uncertain about the paternity of his child. Well, I made an investigation into DNA paternity tests and was rather shocked by what I discovered.
Firstly, there are several companies out there, but not one is actually based in Ireland (more like agencies). Just about all certified labs are U.K.-based.
Secondly, it can be expensive: for example €600 for Cellmark Ireland an other companies are cheaper. They are accurate: 99.999% for the trio but only 99.97% accurate if samples are from just the alleged father and the child.
Thirdly (and here's the kicker): if you want DNA paternity test and you aren't either on the birth certificate or unmarried, you must have permission from the mother for the test, if the child is under 16.
My friend obviously doesn't want to upset his girlfriend by demanding a paternity test! He has to either suffer in silence or weather the storm whilst paying a fortune to a solicitor. Apparently this is the case in Irish Law and for any Irish agency of these firms. I'm not sure if this a EU-wide obligation. I think they're illegal in France (or soon to be). I believe confirming one's paternity ought to be a fundamental human right.
This means that if you have fallen out with your partner, you can't get this test done without first going through a Court. The Court can compel a DNA test be done (though doesn't always grant this right) and I am not even 100% if merely signing the birth certificate is sufficient recognition of paternity.
Here are some companies:
Cellmark Ireland | DNA Testing & Paternity Tests UK
DNA Testing for Paternity | Home DNA Test kits by homeDNAdirect Ireland
DNA Ireland - Home -
This company does "DNA Testing for Infidelity", in addition to the usual services:
DNA Testing in Ireland | Paternity Testing | Home DNA Test by easyDNA
A nurse (employed by one of the abovementioned companies) advised on a U.S. send-away postal kit. She considered them to be almost as accurate, but no obligation for maternal permission. A simple cheek swab and into the post it goes! A whole lot of heartache to be avoided in the years to come!
- I am unclear about maintenance (perhaps someone can help me?), can you be obliged to pay maintenance if you aren't recognized as the father i.e. on the birth certificate?
Can you be obliged to pay maintenance if not named on the birth certificate but subsequently acknowledged to be the father following the DNA paternity test? (I presume one is not obliged to pay maintenance if one is unnamed on the child's birth certificate? But is obliged to do so if a married father, separated or divorced?)
Under what circumstances is one obliged to pay maintenance? I presume a married father does, but what if the father were subsequently found to be not the biological father, would he continue to be obliged to pay up?